I'm excited about something my brother told me a couple of nights ago. Excited by what might happen, anyway ... he's currently an electrical engineer in San Francisco. He and his family have lived in that area for ... I'm going to get this wrong, but I'm going to guess about 10 years. Maybe more! Time does fly, doesn't it.
He's considering a job change. I have to say, my brother is a very, very bright guy. He's an Eagle Scout. He was awarded 'Engineering student of the year' the three times he was eligible in college. He scored higher than I did on the AP English test in our respective senior years in high school, and I'm a journalist! Don't think that doesn't still sting. Simply put, he's good at ... everything. And if any shortcomings do exist, he is driven to make up for them with a relentless -- some might say insane -- competitive spirit. And yet, he's still a nice and (am I right on this, Molly?) pretty humble guy, really. The kind of guy I'd want to be friends with, if he weren't already my brother. Overall, I'm really lucky I came first. He would've been an impossible act to follow.
So he's being head-hunted -- I think that term applies here -- by some cushy work-from-home operation. Consulting, or something. The real kicker is, his home can be ANYWHERE. So he and the fam are considering pulling up stakes and heading back north, to Washington state. Spokane, to be more specific.
As I say, none of this is a done deal yet. But I've been thinking about how great it would be, for them and (I must say it) for me. They'd be very near Molly's (my sis-in-law's) parents, which would be fun for them and for their girls. They'd be in the area where Molly grew up, and within a couple of hours of our hometown and college town. Better yet, they'd give me an excuse to vacation in eastern Washington!
I cannot express enough my incredible shock at the fact that I really meant that last sentence. I simply cannot. Perhaps those lucky few of you (Israel? Schuyler? my old friends, obviously?) who have been through eastern Washington can imagine. But ever since my parents moved to Anchorage a few years ago, I've felt a slight regret -- I did say slight! -- that there's nothing compelling enough to pull me back there with regularity. Nothing that can trump familial obligations to fly to San Francisco and Anchorage now and then, anyway. I still have close relatives on the west side of the state, but there are many friends on the east side whom I am sad to never have an excuse to see. I've been counting on my 20th high school reunion to do the trick in 2009, but after that ... a visit seemed mighty unlikely.
And now that Ben and Molly might be moving back, well, it's just perfect. I hear a whisper that my parents might be returning to the Lower 48 within a year or so, as well! It's unclear exactly where to, but if I were laying a bet, I'd put it solidly somewhere in the Pacific Northwest.
Of course, then I'll regret the fact that I don't have a nice, solid reason to visit Alaska again.
Let's face it -- I'm just not capable of being satisfied.